Are you interested in becoming a driving instructor? If so then learn everything you need to know about becoming a qualified and successful one right here.

You have two choices when it comes to the training
Either you can study and complete the course by yourself through home study etc. Or you can find a reputable driving school and enrol with them. Both of these options have their own distinct advantages and disadvantages. If you choose to go for it by yourself, then you have to purchase the study material and discipline and organise yourself. Although you may save money doing this you should also note that the failure rates are much higher if you do this, than if you enrol with a professional driving instructor school.

Apart from the higher pass rates, the other main advantages of enrolling and studying at a driving school are that;

  • You will have the support of professional instructors
  • Will be following a proven and tested formula for passing.
  • All of the training aids and study materials are provided for you.
  • You will get quick answers to any queries you have.

No matter which method you choose, always focus on ensuring that you get value for money and also the best possible training out there. Remember good tutors in any training courses should assist you in;

  • Studying
  • Understanding
  • Practising

The benefits of being a driving instructor

  • You are your own boss.
  • The potential to earn up to £40,000 per annum.
  • Freedom to work hours that suit you, full time or part time.
  • Job satisfaction at seeing your pupils pass their driving exams.

What exams or certificates do you need to pass to become a driving instructor?
You have to pass the DSA ADI (Approved Driving Instructor) examination and also be listed on the ADI Register.
You need to pass a Criminal Record Bureau check.

The examination
Driving instructor exams are very challenging and are made up of the following three separate parts;

PART 1 – Theory test
This consists of a 100 multiple choice questions as well as a video based hazard perception test. Each question will have 4 possible answers and are aimed at assessing your knowledge of the Highway Code and related subjects. The test will last 90 minutes. To pass you must get 85 questions correct.  Here are some of the subjects covered in the theory test;

  • Road procedures
  • Traffic signs and signals
  • Car Control
  • Pedestrians
  • Mechanical knowledge
  • General road safety
  • Driving techniques
  • Medical knowledge

Hazard Perception Test
This lasts about 15 minutes, during which you will be shown 14 video clips. All of the scenes will contain hazards that you must identify.

PART 2 – Driving test
Made up of a driving test (similar to what learner drivers have to take), where you will be expected to demonstrate a high level of driving ability. Your eyesight will also be checked, specifically your ability to read a number plate at distance of 27.5 metres. You are allowed to make 6 minor driving faults and you will also be asked to perform;

  • A series of driving manoeuvres.
  • An emergency stop.

PART 3 – Instructional ability
Looking at your ability to instruct pupils. In a role reversal scenario the examiner will play the role of a learner driver and you will become the instructor. The ‘learner’ will then make deliberate mistakes and ask questions, you will be assessed on your ability to give support and answer any queries. You will be expected to:

  • Identify, assess and correct any driving errors.
  • Maintain a safe controlled learning environment during the test.

Personal requirements needed to become a driving instructor

  • You need to be good with people.
  • Have a comprehensive and deep understanding of road safety issues.

Choose a driving instructor training company that has

  • A excellent reputation .
  • Provides support both during your training and also once you have qualified.
  • Has highly qualified and competent ORDIT and DSA trainers.
  • A good track record and a high success rate.
  • Gives extra free training until a pupil passes.
  • Allows flexible training programmes (if you need to train around current commitments etc).

Franchise opportunities
Some driving schools offer franchise opportunities after you have finished your course. It is worthwhile enquiring about these.

The cost of driving instructor training
This varies depending on your training provider. Most reputable schools provide comprehensive courses that cost between £3000 to £6000.

What are the employment prospects for driving instructors
Many training companies are also driving schools. After you have passed their course some training schools offer you the opportunity to work for them, this is a quick way of earning money straight away. Other alternatives you could consider are:

  • Find employment with a local driving school.
  • Franchise
  • Set up your own business.


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